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Fianna Fáil still committed to two-tier health system – Ó Caoláin

7 February, 2011 - by Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin TD

Sinn Féin Health spokesperson and Cavan-Monaghan candidate Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin has said that the comments of Fianna Fáil Health spokesperson Barry Andrews on Morning Ireland show that Fianna Fáil is still committed to maintaining the inequitable two-tier health system.

Ó Caoláin said:

“Fianna Fáil Health spokesperson Barry Andrews has attempted to distance his party from the policies implemented by former Health Minister Mary Harney, including co-location. But these were not the policies of one Minister, they were the policies of Fianna Fáil-led Governments, reaffirmed in successive manifestos and Programmes for Government. And Barry Andrews faithfully served those Governments and voted for those policies.

“Barry Andrews also stated that the country had been served well by the mix of public and private care. This shows clearly that Fianna Fáil is still committed to maintaining the grossly inequitable and inefficient two-tier public-private health system in this State. In fact Barry Andrews’ words echo almost exactly those of Fianna Fáil Health Minister Rory O’Hanlon in 1991 when he said that ‘the integrated mix of public and private care has served the nation well’.

“Public-private apartheid in our health services must end – it is wasteful of lives and resources. Fianna Fáil would maintain this apartheid, while Fine Gael, with the support of the Labour Party, wants to hand over the health services to private for-profit insurance companies. Sinn Féin stands for a fully public system with equal access for all based on medical need alone and we will be outlining our proposals further during the course of this General Election campaign.” ENDS

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